ELON, N.C. – After a solid 2-1 start to the season, Tuesday turned into a learning opportunity for a young Campbell squad following a 3-0 (25-20, 25-19, 25-17) defeat at Elon in Alumni Gym.
"Elon came out fired up to play in front of their home crowd," said first-year head coach Greg Goral. "We just did not match their intensity from the start. We have to learn from this experience and move forward."
The Phoenix (2-2) posted 46 kills and a .400 attacking pct., which limited the opportunities for Campbell (2-2) to sustain rallies. Megan Gravley and Chanelle Smith paced the match with 11 kills each, while Maggie Reichard tallied 15 digs.
The Camels were led by junior outside Jessica Groen (Las Cruces, N.M.) with eight kills, while middle blockers senior Lindsey Coats (Dunn, N.C.) and junior Lorin Thomas (Raleigh, N.C.) each terminated five attacks.
Senior setter Heather Wilson (Concord, N.C.) totaled 20 assists and nine digs. She moved into a tie for fourth place on the program's all-time assists chart with Pam Hughes (1999-00) at 2,292.
A 13-dig performance was notched by Crema, the reigning Big South defensive player of the week.
With the score knotted at 15-all in the first set, Elon changed the momentum of the frame by scoring three-straight points to take an 18-16 advantage. The Phoenix went on to secure the set, 25-20.
Campbell fell behind early 5-2 in the second frame before Thomas used a pair of block to keep the score within reach at 9-7. The Phoenix notched a three- and five-point run to stretch the advantage to 18-10.
The Camels' resiliency showed as they registered a four-point rally of their own with sophomore Katelyn Layden (Chapel Hill, N.C.) on the service line, cutting the deficit to four, 20-16. The rally fell short as the Phoenix notched a 25-19 victory.
Following the intermission, Elon continued to have an answer for each Camel rally and raced out to a 13-5 lead and eventually clinched the match with a 25-17 win.
Campbell begins its home slate at Gore Arena/John W. Pope Jr. Convocation Center on Friday with the Hampton Inn of Holly Springs Invitational. The Camels are set to face N.C. Central at 3:30 p.m. and Indiana St. at 8 p.m. on Friday before facing Georgetown on Saturday with the first serve set for 1:30 p.m.